Freddie Mac issued a bulletin Monday containing guidance for mortgage lenders during the government shutdown.
“We're issuing this guidance to help ensure the continued smooth operation of the mortgage market during the temporary shutdown of the federal government,” Freddie Mac official Dave Lowman said Monday. “Today's bulletin is intended to give lenders the certainty to continue approving and delivering new mortgages that meet Freddie Mac guidelines to eligible borrowers, such as federal employees and contractors, during the temporary shutdown. We are also reminding servicers of our forbearance options to assist qualified homeowners with Freddie Mac mortgages to minimize the shutdown's impact on our nation's families and communities.”
Among other things, the bulletin offers guidance on processing mortgages for furloughed employees. For instance, lenders can send mortgages to Freddie even when the borrower isn’t receiving a paycheck as a result of the shutdown, “provided the loan meets Freddie Mac's other requirements and the lender expects the borrower to return to work when the government reopens.”
Lenders can also accept a borrower’s most recent signed federal tax return while the IRS isn’t processing tax transcript requests “when tax information is needed to evaluate a borrower for Freddie Mac's Home Affordable Modification program, standard modifications or other loan workout option.”
The complete bulletin can be found here